Ohio Using VR Technology for Innovation in Aerospace Development

State grant helps create state of the art virtual manufacturing center, creates new jobs

COLUMBUS, Ohio, Oct. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- The state of Ohio supports a new project created by Boeing-Heath that uses virtual reality technology to revolutionize the manufacturing process for aerospace products throughout the state and the entire Midwest. Boeing's Virtual Manufacturing Center (VMC) demonstrates Ohio's commitment to the aerospace industry and its standing as a world leader in manufacturing, according to the Ohio Business Development Coalition (OBDC), the nonprofit organization that markets the state for capital investment.

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The $1.25 million VMC will be located at the Central Ohio Aerospace and Technology Center (COATC) in Licking County, and will create 10 new jobs and retain more than 500 positions within the first three years of the project's initial operation. Project funding includes a $500,000 state-local incentive package and a $200,000 Rapid Outreach Grant through the Ohio Department of Development.

"The virtual reality tool is seen as a quantum leap into a brighter future for the Central Ohio Aerospace and Technology Center," said Rick Platt, Director for the Heath-Newark-Licking County Port Authority. "Boeing does more than $4 billion a year in business in Ohio, and the VMC could quickly become an aerospace product development mecca for the hundreds of Boeing suppliers in Ohio and the Midwest. This investment puts the Aerospace Center on the map in an unprecedented way."

Among its applications, the VMC can display engineering designs in virtual reality helping technicians discover ways to improve the manufacturing process. Workers have access to a real-time visual experience with prototype products that have not yet been produced. The VMC will expand Boeing-Heath's capabilities, allowing it to introduce technical and engineering data into the manufacturing process in a very cutting edge way.

The birthplace of flight, Ohio provides a world-class research environment that includes two dedicated federal laboratories and ten aerospace related doctoral programs at Ohio universities. Graduates of these institutions provide a cluster of highly skilled and educated workers.

Ohio's Third Frontier Project is investing $1.6 billion over 10 years to expand Ohio's high-tech research capabilities, promote innovation, create high-paying jobs and form new companies in technical areas.

"Businesses in the aerospace industry are recognizing the benefits of locating in Ohio," said Marlon Cheatham, brand manager for the Ohio Business Development Coalition. "Owners profit from the state's newly revamped tax code as well as the bottom-line benefits of better work:life balance for their employees. Ohio offers low-cost, low stress communities and a unique mix of micropolitan and metropolitan cities. This diversity provides executives and employees the resources and time to pursue their professional goals and personal aspirations without having to compromise one for the other. Ohio truly is the state of perfect balance."

About the Ohio Business Development Coalition

The Ohio Business Development Coalition is a nonprofit organization that provides marketing strategy and implementation to support Ohio's economic development efforts. For more information, visit www.ohiomeansbusiness.com.

Web site: http://www.ohiomeansbusiness.com/

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